Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met in the coastal town of Mamallapuram near Chennai on Friday. Xi is in Tamil Nadu for two-day informal summit with Modi – the second between the two leaders after the one in Wuhan city of China in April 2018.
Xi was received by Modi at the Arjuna’s Penance monument, after which they visited Krishna’s Butter Ball, a huge granite boulder that rests on a slope. They then proceeded to the Five Chariots complex and Shore Temple. The two leaders attended a cultural programme at Shore Temple. They had dinner later in the evening, and the president was reportedly served Tamil cuisine.
Monuments in the historical Mamallapuram town form a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town is also known as Mahabalipuram.
The Chinese president had arrived in Chennai at 2 pm, and was received by Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Speaker P Dhanapal, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam at the airport. He stopped by at the ITC Grand Chola hotel, before leaving for Mamallapuram around 4 pm. Modi had already arrived in the coastal town by then.
On Saturday, India and China will hold delegation-level talks at Taj Fisherman’s Cove Resort and Spa in Chennai. Modi will then host a lunch for Xi, after which the Chinese president will leave for the airport.
Ahead of the summit, Chennai got a makeover, with walls being cleaned of graffiti and electric poles being given neat covers. New fences were built outside the monuments and the stone pavements leading to it were renovated. Security measures were also beefed up in the state with the traffic police announcing major route changes within Chennai city limits and the outskirts. The routes were closed for heavy vehicles on both the days of the summit, according to The News Minute.
Earlier this week, Xi had met Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan in Beijing, where they spoke about the situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
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